Written By Mary Pat Withem

When customers go to restaurants, hotels, gas stations, stores, etc; it is very important to rate visits so people can make sure that they don’t go to places that aren’t going to be worth the trip. Sometimes people also use these ratings to pick a restaurant for dinner.

This is especially true for restaurants that are trying to thrive such as Mozzeria. With Yelp, people rate businesses based on experience and share what they enjoyed and/or disliked.

How Yelp works is when somebody records their experience, and it is counted towards the total number of people that have rated that specific business. One thing to keep in mind is that the very first vote by a reviewer is used against the business. The reason for this is because Yelp doesn’t see the reviewer as a reliable reviewer until they have done several reviews.

Choosing a restaurant, people would rather pick a restaurant with 900 “5 stars” reviews than a restaurant that has 500 “5 stars” reviews.

While Yelp is a preferred site for many restaurants, there isn’t a spot on Yelp to focus on Deaf owned businesses. There are sites out there that are trying to gain attention and get some momentum. However, there has been no real push for those websites since they might not put forth the effort to use Yelp to their advantage and the community fails to see importance of such use.

Many restaurants rely on Yelp for referrals or reviews to improve their services. Plenty of hearing owned restaurants know about Yelp and uses their ratings to make decisions and know where to pay more attention to catch the problem areas. While businesses that are owned by our community individuals could use more publicity, how many of them actually get reviews on Yelp? If you have a business and are a member of this community, let us know you have reviews on Yelp!

Some members of our community don’t necessarily care about sharing their experiences with hearing people, it is also clear that they expect hearing people to understand what is considered a no-no. Building a collaborative effort with one of the largest hearing based rating organization would help the community get their foot in the door and start emphasizing “deaf friendly” behavior and give people a place to share their opinion among other members of the same community.

Companies have asked that people start to rate their business on Yelp to help increase the flow of customers. Lets work together and bring recognition to our community businesses! This would help Yelp tap into untapped resources and improve their presence in the community.